18 February 2008

Where did the bodies come from?

I saw a disturbing 20/20 report investigating these bodyworld shows.
"Authorities in China and New York have opened investigations into allegations that a black market in Chinese bodies, which may include executed prisoners, is sending corpses to the United States for public display." (from the ABC news website)

St. Louis has been hosting what the Science Center is calling "the most successful exhibition in St. Louis history." There are two rival companies showing these plasticized human bodies in various athletic and everyday life poses in museums and galleries over the U.S. Supposedly the one here in St. Louis displays only bodies that have been expressly donated by the individuals for plasticizing. But the other company was very sketchy and suspect (the dude interviewed kept looking left and hesitating as he spoke, and seemed almost gleeful in the beginning of the interview talking about how the investors were making a lot of money on this venture (a killing, you might say...). When pressed, he couldn't really verify where the bodies came from. It seemed pretty obvious that he lied about visiting the scary meat-packing-like factory at the end of a slummy road in China where 20/20 taped people hunched over the bodies plasticizing them. The black market orders came to the states on freighters from China, and the cargo contents were labeled something like "plastic models for teaching"....um, well, no....they're (were) actually human bodies.

The 20/20 interviewer asked some hard questions about how they came to be making millions of dollars in profits using bodies of people whose families may not even know how, when or where they died. They had a rabbi on the show as well, who spoke about how disturbing it was that what we like to call curiosity about human anatomy and science is instead just morbid fascination that shows how little we honor human life.

Totally creepy or what?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heidi V.

9:23 AM  
Blogger Tirzah said...

Ugh- I cant stand this show! Bo laughs at me went I huff and puff and close my eyes when it is abvertised! It doesnt surprise me. And dont get me started on the whole 'Art' thing they call this.! Sorry to make my first post so loud:) i am glad I found you over here.

5:46 PM  

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